After the third debate, much ado was being made about Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton being seated close to each other at the Alfred E. Smith dinner, separated only by a holy man and a gulf of political differences.
It seems that the the seating arrangement may have been a good idea.
Reporters covering the white-tie affair, which is an election year tradition, noted the lack of interaction between the pair of presidential candidates on Twitter about 15 minutes before the event began. At around 7:45 p.m., many correspondents said Clinton and Trump had not acknowledged each other or spoken since the start of the seating process. Trump and Clinton are separated only by Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Archbishop of New York.
However, as the dinner went on, at least two photos surfaced on Twitter that appear to show both Trump and Clinton leaning in and having a conversation with Dolan.
Typically, each candidate gives a speech during this Catholic charity dinner that is rich with humor and self-deprecating remarks. However, as Trump is the Master of the Unexpected, his speech took a sharp turn to target Hillary Clinton forcefully.
Here is the video (skip to 1:20:20 for the beginning of his presentation).
Some of his pointed remarks:
- Hillary is so corrupt, she got kicked off the Watergate Commission.
- What’s her pitch?…The economy is busted. The government is corrupt. Washington is failing. I’ve been working on your behalf for 30 years. I can fix it.
- [In reference to the Wikileaks releases] Hillary feels it is vital to deceive the people by having one public policy and a totally different policy in private.
- She’s in public, pretending not to hate Catholics.
- She already knows the jokes because they were given to her in advance by Donna Brazile.
Per tradition, he ended his remarks with something positive about his opponent. He wryly noted, “Hillary has forgotten more things that most people ever know.”
Frankly, I was cheering so loud, I might have been heard at the luxurious Waldorf Astoria Hotel all the way from San Diego. Trump went into an arena filled with elite politicians, media representatives, and celebrities and directly offered them realities about the woman most there support.
I do not know how many “average” Americans watch, but I suspect that the clip of him being booed will be making the media rounds tomorrow. However, if journalists believe that Trump upsetting ultra-wealthy celebrities will unsettle many average American voters, they will be in for an exceedingly rude shock.
Bonus: Trump managed to get key Wikileaks findings about Clinton out in a way that will ensure the material will actually be covered and spread through social media.
At this stage in the election, I am tired of seeing Clinton’s smug smile after her deceitful partnering with the Democratic National Committee to undermine Bernie Sanders in the primary, after her team incited violence at rallies that included some I attended, and after she colluded with the press to promote her campaign unfairly.
Sitting there comfortably after all we know about her, her husband, and their furniture-stealing history, I was delighted to see Trump make her feel small and uncomfortable in that chic setting.
At this point, what difference does it make?
We will see November 8th.DONATE
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